Second Duke's the Charm is a historical romance set in Regency England with the ton, expectations, and an unlikely romance filled with love. Pull up a chair, sit back, and relax as we're taken on a merry ride with unexpected twists and turns.


The Description

New Series: Book 1
Publication Date: December 26, 2023

Meet Her Majesty’s Rebels: three brilliant women who run King & Co., London’s most exclusive investigative agency…

The wedding-night death of her much older husband left Tess Townsend the Dowager Duchess of Wansford—and still a virgin. Now she and her two best friends investigate London’s most scandalous crimes, and while Tess longs to experience physical pleasure for herself, she can’t risk losing her treasured independence…

Cynical shipping magnate Justin Thornton never expected to inherit a dukedom, but he’ll do his duty. When the ravishing woman he kissed at a party turns out to be the Dowager Duchess, Justin sees an obvious solution: a marriage of convenience that will suit them both.

But the passion that sparks between them is anything but convenient. As Tess works on a new case at the request of Queen Charlotte, her increasingly suspicious behavior makes Justin question her motives—and her past. The infuriating woman clearly can’t be trusted, but Justin doesn’t believe in love, so there’s absolutely no danger of him falling for his own wife…is there?

The Review

Second Duke’s the Charm by Kate Bateman was a delightful read with layer upon layer of storylines and personalities. There were so many stories told and woven together.

This is Tess’s story, along with Justin, the second duke she is involved with after her elderly husband, whom he succeeds, dies on their wedding night. What a romp we’re taken on as they get to know each other better, and their attraction grows even though none of it is in Justin’s plans of love ’em and leave ’em, especially since he only marries Tess not to have to be on the marriage mart and be waylaid by mother’s of daughters needing a match. Or are there other reasons that need to be ferreted out?

The story has a good flow and intersperses the storylines to keep our interest. There are several twists and turns in the story and several unexpected happenings. Some unsavory characters and danger are included to keep us on our toes as we get more vested in the story. We learn about Tess and Justin a little at a time, including their friendships and business dealings, especially since Tess has a good head on her shoulders regarding the estate and its tenants.

This is the first book in a new series, Her Majesty’s Rebels, and I can’t wait for more. There is some closure and an unexpected happily ever after in the offing. There are some loose ends, primarily related to Tess’s two best friends and the business they share—incognito, of course. The title is spot on, and once again, Ms. Bateman has a winner.

Second Duke’s the Charm is a historical romance set in Regency England with the ton, expectations, and an unlikely romance filled with love. Pull up a chair, sit back, and relax as we’re taken on a merry ride with unexpected twists and turns.Buy Links

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About The Author

Kate Bateman, also writing as K.C. Bateman, is a bestselling author of Regency and Renaissance historical romances, including the Secrets and Spies series, Bow Street Bachelors series, and Ruthless Rivals series. She loves to write feisty, intelligent heroines, wickedly inappropriate banter, and heroes you want to both strangle and kiss.

Her books have received multiple Starred Reviews from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal, and have been translated into multiple languages, including French, Brazilian, Japanese, German, Romanian, and Croatian. Her Renaissance romp, The Devil To Pay, was a 2019 RITA® Finalist for Historical Romance.

When not writing, Kate leads a not-so-secret double life as a fine art appraiser, auction house owner, and on-screen antiques expert for several TV shows in the UK. She currently lives in Illinois with a number-loving husband and three inexhaustible children, and regularly returns to her native England ‘for research.’

Kate loves to hear from readers. Contact her via her website: and sign up for her newsletter to receive regular updates on new releases, giveaways, and exclusive excerpts. Find her on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.




JoAnne Weiss, nee Montalbano, was born and raised in NYC until moving to CT with her family when she was 16 and she's never left. Married for 41 years with one grown son, she works in an elementary school office where she's been since it opened in 2003. Prior to that, she was an accountant in several corporations before becoming a stay at home mom for 12 years. JoAnne enjoys reading, traveling, spending time with her family, and extended family as well as with friends. She enjoys cooking and rarely uses a recipe the way it was intended but instead uses them and cooking shows to give her new ideas and suggestions. JoAnne has a huge bucket list of places she'd like to visit but has been lucky enough to travel to England, Italy, the Caribbean, Mexico, Canada, and many states in the U.S. including Hawaii, California, Nevada, Arizona, and Maine among others. Some of JoAnne's favorite genres include contemporary romance, chick-lit, romantic suspense, and historical romances including regency and those set in the west. JoAnne is on several author's street teams and enjoys interacting with many of them on Facebook as well as reading their newsletters. She has been lucky enough to meet some of her favorite authors among them Susan Mallery, Debbie Macomber, Nora Roberts, Meg Tilly, Beatriz Williams, and Marie Bostwick. JoAnne took a road trip with her sister in the fall of 2019 and visited Nora Roberts' bookstore in Boonsboro, Maryland for an authors' signing. She hopes to do more of this in the future. JoAnne leaves reviews for all books she reads on Goodreads and her reviews can be found at JoAnne currently reviews for - and which is on hiatus. Previously she reviewed for which has since closed. Payment is in the form of receiving free books to read and review. Her mantra is too many books and not enough time!


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Second Duke's the Charm is a historical romance set in Regency England with the ton, expectations, and an unlikely romance filled with love. Pull up a chair, sit back, and relax as we're taken on a merry ride with unexpected twists and turns.4.5-STAR REVIEW: SECOND DUKE'S THE CHARM by Kate Bateman